Mario R. Capecchi, Ph.D.
National Academy of Future Physicians and Medical Scientists
Dr. Mario Capecchi currently serves as Science Director to the National Academy of Future Physicians and Medical Scientists. Dr. Capecchi, a biophysicist, is a Distinguished Professor of Human Genetics at the University of Utah School of Medicine.
He is best known for his groundbreaking work in gene targeting in mouse embryo-derived stem cells. He was awarded the 2007 Nobel Prize in Medicine, along with Martin Evans and Oliver Smithies, for their work in finding ways to manipulate the mammalian genome by inserting new genes into cells.
This research led to the breeding of “knock-out mice” and “knock-in mice,” animals with a single gene removed or inserted. Dr. Capecchi’s knock-out mice allow scientists complete freedom regarding how to manipulate the DNA sequences in the genome of living mice. His research interests include analysis of early mouse development, neural development in mammals, gene therapy, and production of murine models of human genetic diseases.
Dr. Capecchi’s current research at the Capecchi Lab at the University of Utah School of Medicine is on modeling certain neuro and psychiatric disorders and pediatric cancers to measure and ultimately develop human therapies.
Academy Athletic Director
NFL Football Player
Bo Eason was an NFL top pick for the Houston Oilers and went on to play with the San Francisco 49ers. During his five-year career, Mr. Eason competed beside and against some of the greatest players of his generation. In 2001, Mr. Eason wrote a one-man play, Runt of the Litter, based on his personal experience, which he performed on Broadway to rave reviews. The New York Times called it “One of the most powerful plays in the last decade.”
Mr. Eason has never stopped battling to be the best. In a world that has reduced itself to participation trophies, he trains students, athletes and entrepreneurs on how to keep fighting to be #1. He believes achieving greatness is not only your responsibility but also your birthright. As the Athletic Director of the Academy, Mr. Eason mentors athletes to create a vision for their life, design an environment that supports it and give everything they’ve got to achieve it. His book There’s No Plan B for Your A-Game will be published next year by St. Martin’s Press.
John C. Mather, Ph.D.
National Academy of Future Scientists and Technologists
Science Director (2015-2018)
Dr. Mather currently serves as Science Director of the Academy.
Winner of the 2006 Nobel Prize in Physics, Dr. Mather studied cosmic microwave background radiation and received his Ph.D. in physics from the University of California.
As a National Research Council Postdoctoral Fellow at the Goddard Institute for Space Studies in New York, Dr. Mather led a team to propose the Cosmic Background Explorer (COBE) satellite mission to study cosmic microwave background radiation. This work, for which he won a Nobel Prize, helped cement the Big Bang theory of the universe. According to the Nobel Prize committee, “the COBE project can also be regarded as the starting point for cosmology as a precision science.”
Dr. Mather has served on advisory and working groups for the National Academy of Sciences, NASA, and the National Science Foundation.
In 2007, Mather was listed among Time magazine’s 100 Most Influential People in The World. In October, 2012, he was listed again by Time magazine in a special issue on New Space Discoveries as one of 25 most influential people in space.
Richard Rossi currently serves as President and Executive Director of the Academy
Mr. Rossi is a co-founder of two of the world’s largest and most prestigious enrichment programs for high-achieving students.
In the 26 years of Mr. Rossi’s guidance, more than 640,000 primary, middle school, secondary school and college students from more than 118 countries have attended these academic programs focusing on leadership and career development. These programs were designed to honor, inspire and motivate the nation’s most promising future leaders.
In 2009, Mr. Rossi co-created one of the largest gatherings of high-achieving youth in Washington, D.C., history: 15,300 high-achieving young men and women who came together to experience the historic nature of President Obama’s first inauguration.
Mr. Rossi now devotes himself to the National Academy of Future Collegiate and Professional Athletes, the National Academy of Future Physicians and Medical Scientists, the National Academy of Scientists and Technologists, and other academic programs on a full-time basis.